Nambi E. Kelley, known for her works Native Son and The Chi, has recently signed on as playwright for the upcoming play, Phenomenal Woman: Maya Angelou. Kelley will be supported by Guy Johnson, Angelou’s son, who will be in charge of producing the piece.
What We Know:
- After being shown at the Ensemble Theatre in Houston, Texas and Hattiloo Theatre in Memphis, Tennessee, the show will have its world premiere at the North Carolina Black Repertory Company in the spring of 2021. It was originally set to debut this year at the same location but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- According to Broadwayworld.com, Phenomenal Woman: Maya Angelou received the Sylvia Sprinkle-Hamlin Rolling World Premiere Award at North Carolina Black Repertory Company’s 2019 National Black Theatre Festival. Any recipient of this award secures that any work will get at a minimum of three regional productions, within two years.
- “It is a dream come true to work directly with people who knew and loved Dr. Angelou, including her son Guy, her sister friend Ms. Lydia Stuckey and the good people at Corstoria and Branded Pictures Entertainment,” said Kelley in a statement.
- Phenomenal Woman: Maya Angelou will be a combination of poetry, music, writing, dance, and knowledge that aims to highlight Dr. Angelou’s and traverse the concept of human nature. This event will be a great opportunity for Angelou’s wisdom with a new generation.
- The renowned American novelist, Toni Morrison, chose Kelley specifically to adapt her novel, Jazz, for the stage. In addition to Native Son, her plays include Hands Up, Xtigone, Seven Playwrights Seven Testaments and a few others.
As an actress, Kelley has also appeared in plays Pipeline, Two Trains Running, and more. Exact dates for the casting of Phenomenal Woman: Maya Angelou has yet to be announced.